The Front - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Front Reviews

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December 29, 2017
One of the few Woody Allen films I've liked.
No, this was written by Bernstein & directed by Ritt - so I guess it's just as actor that I like Woody. An dramatic comedy based around the communist scare of the 1950's - with an incredible supporting cast.
½ November 29, 2017
Not his best but Allens look at the 50s Hollywood blacklist is an interesting if underwhelming picture.Mostel's my favorite thing about this movie....easily so.
½ October 26, 2017
Really underrated movie, more people need to see it.
May 21, 2017
Our history teacher showed this movie on the projector and I thought it was absolutely amazing.
March 7, 2017

Respectable effort in terms of overall execution / historical relevance but as a blacklist movie with a comedic edge woodys character does not feel appropriate to the situation - although great perfomances and cast are fine and on point, directing is nothing special - structurally the movie is sound but i just can't enjoy it as much with such a wishy washy and unlikeable lead - last lines may sound cool to end the movie but the real situation deserved better and luckily another movie trumbo delivered what this movie could not at the time - acquired taste that has not aged as well as other woody movies
October 29, 2016
Another great Woody Allen movie that has a way of injecting humor into a serious topic or event. This movie takes place during the time of the McCarthy era when many in the entertainment industry were being blacklisted for being suspected of having sympathies with Communism. Woody Allen plays a gambling bookie who is approached by his friend who is a television writer who was blacklisted. Allen agrees to put his name on scripts written by his friend and others so they could earn money. For doing this he gets a portion of any scripts sold. At first Allen does it for the money but eventually he becomes sympathetic to their plight when he is questioned by Congress to reveal names of suspected Communist sympathizers.
½ August 7, 2016
"The Front" is an amusing stab at 1950s blacklisting, but it feels a little undercharged.
½ January 23, 2016
Good drama for Woody but not entirely in his style, at least it wasn't written/directed by himself.
½ February 19, 2015
This really is a wonderfully written script. I feel that the third act could have been slightly better crafted but the journey offered up to that point is so rich in content, laughs and brutal honesty that it's easy to forget a minor annoyance. Also, this has to be one Woody's better roles.
February 14, 2015
I'm a big fan of Allen's earlier work. Very well-acted & intelligent rebuke of the McCarthy era & its overreach. What started out as a serious agenda against Communism went overboard like almost all social movements & agendas. The film is very smart & highly entertaining at the same time. This is probably Allen's best film out of what I have seen & his best satire. People who are concerned about history should see this.
October 14, 2014
Out of all of the Woody Allen movies that I have seen to date, this is the best acting that I have seen from him. There's none of those annoying one liners or the usual focus on a troubled relationships. Maybe that's because it wasn't written and directed by Woody Allen, which proves that he can put in a better performance when he isn't behind the camera. The movie is based around the time when communists were getting black listed in Hollywood which meant that people wasn't able to get there scripts read by studios. This is when Allen comes in, and works as the perfect cover for the out of work writers. Although this film was released in the 70's, it's still watchable and enjoyable for this day and age. 

I have finally found a straight laced Woody Allen movie which I didn't find annoying! It just happens to be one that he hasn't written or directed and he isn't constantly getting his leg over during the movie. I liked the performance from Zero Mostel, who starred in a lot of Gene Wilder movies like the Producers and I liked the fact that the director brought tension to the whole difficult situation. In all, this is a better side to Woody Allen's acting which wasn't as big as Manhattan or Annie Hall, but it is just as good.

I recommend this movie to people who are into there dramas about a group of writers who get black listed from Hollywood during the communist period. 6/10
May 14, 2014
'The Front' is basically a statement on how ratting out someone can change the course of their life and those around them, in an era where conspiracy and paranoia thrived. A combination of comedy and drama, the delivery unfortunately felt unenergetic.
Super Reviewer
½ March 13, 2014
The Front stars Woody Allen (not written or directed by) as a front for blacklisted writers. I didn't find much funny with this movie, and often the story is bland. Woody Allens characters moral transitions, while important for the film, happened to quickly. He does have great chemistry with screen partner Zero Mostel though. The film really did win me over with the ending, and the charming credits. Shows the issues with blacklisting, and the industry during the red scare.
February 14, 2014
Interesting exploration of one of the darkest periods of 20th century US history: the McCarthy communist witch-hunts of the 1950s, and the resulting blacklisting of members of the movie and TV industries. Gives a good feel for the oppressive, paranoid, farcical and destructive nature of the witch-hunts and blacklists.

However, the movie pulls its punches. For much of its duration, the movie is a comedy. The fact that Woody Allen stars in the lead role doesn't lend itself to the drama of the situation. A full-on drama was what was required.

The final scene should have been a powerful indictment of the oppressiveness of the system. Other than the final line, it is very mild and unfocused.

As mentioned, Woody Allen's presence doesn't help the drama. However, as far as comedic roles go, it was fine. Zero Mostel gives the stand-out performance - a mixture of pathos, comedy and helplessness that perfectly encapsulated the plight of the average TV/movie star.

Worth watching as an indication of how stupid politicians can be (though we are reminded on a daily basis).
½ December 8, 2013
Formulaic, maybe, but also full of heart. Felt more like a Mel Brooks pic than one of Woody Allen's.
½ September 25, 2013
Okay comedy/drama for which a cashier named Howard Prince (Woody Allen) tries to break into showbiz. He finds a way through a television writer (Michael Murphy), who has been blacklisted from all networks, by replacing him in the writing division. There he pairs up with an idiotic comic (Zero Mostel) and their interests begin to clash. This film tries, but for me, it only has marginal success. It doesn't out like a competitor from the same year "Network" which dives much deeper and more effectively into corrupt television topics. This film is passable, but not great.
March 17, 2013
I'm not a red though.
½ November 13, 2012
Not Woody Allen's best movie but I guess he only started in this he didn't write or direct it. I did think it was a good idea for a movie it just felt like now really happened and woody Allen didn't have as much to work with as usual. Not a bad movie I just think he's been in much better
October 9, 2012
A funny take on the McCarthy era. But it manages to touch on the most brutal aspects of the trials while keeping us interested in Allen's average IQ character working with writing geniuses. Mostel was also good.
September 24, 2012
UGH. I can't tell if I liked this movie or I just flat out hated it because god, Woody Allen's character is so fucking annoying. Does he always act this way? He has these super annoying acting mannerisms like the head bobbing thing he does, or waving his hands around like a nervous idiot. And ugh, his character is not sympathetic at all!! He's ignorant, foolish and just a dumb idiot who's also a selfish man who tries to get the woman he likes to cheat on her boyfriend! And when this girlfriend quits her job for "the greater good" he undermines her and tells her to go back to her job and apologize. Okay okay, so that might be the 1950s way of things but good gosh, Woody Allen was so annoying in this movie. "Here" becomes "hee-ah" and "fair" becomes "fay-ah". HIS ACCENT IS ANNOYING. Woody Allen sir, you may be a decent director ("Midnight in Paris" and "Match Point") but I hope you're not like this in any of your other movies. Hope this is just your character and not your acting style.
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